Graduate Hydrological Forecast Analyst

1. Position information

Vacancy No.: VN19-41
Grade: A1
Job Ref. No.: STF-PS/19-41
Department: Forecast
Section: Evaluation
Reports to: Environmental Forecast Team Leader
Closing Date: 7 November 2019

2. About ECMWF

ECMWF is both a research institute and a 24/7 operational service, producing and disseminating numerical weather predictions to its Member States. ECMWF carries out scientific and technical research directed to the improvement of its forecasts, collects and processes large amounts of observations, and manages a long-term archive of meteorological data. Satellite and in situ observations provide the information for up-to-date global analyses and climate reanalyses of the atmosphere, ocean and land surface.

For details, see

ECMWF has long recognised the value of high-quality forecasts in mitigating the effects of natural disasters. Recognising that floods are among the costliest natural disasters in Europe, the European Commission instigated the development of the European Flood Awareness System (EFAS) at its Joint Research Centre (JRC). Development and testing were carried out in close collaboration with national hydrological and meteorological services, European civil protection agencies (through the Emergency Response and Coordination Centre (ERCC)), and other research institutes. Since 2011, EFAS has been part of the Copernicus Emergency Management Service - Early warning for floods (CEMS-Floods) and it became fully operational in 2012, with ECMWF being the computational centre responsible for the production of its forecast and their dissemination through its own web service.

Alongside this, ECMWF co-operates with the JRC in the provision of the operational Global Flood Awareness System (GloFAS), a scaled-up version of EFAS covering the global domain as a Copernicus EMS operational service since 2018. In addition, ECMWF is also part of the Aristotle-ENHP project, providing briefs to the Emergency Coordination Response Centre of the European Commission on possible upcoming floods in Europe and the world.

EFAS and GloFAS help to protect citizens, the environment, property and cultural heritage when major floods occur by providing:

  • added-value early flood forecasting products for hydrological services;
  • unique overviews of current and forecast floods in Europe (EFAS) and the world (GloFAS) more than three days in advance and;
  • a network of operational hydrological services.

More than 70 hydrological services and civil protection services in Europe are part of the EFAS network, whilst there are more than 4000 registered GloFAS users.

3. Summary of the role

This position is a general hydrological forecast analyst support role in the Environmental Forecasts Team within the Evaluation Section of the Forecast Department. The team is responsible for the development of tools to produce CEMS-Floods forecasts and for the evaluation of their performance.

Current CEMS-Floods products include pan-European/ Global overview maps of flood probabilities for short range (from several hours to 5 days ahead), medium range (up to 10 days ahead for EFAS, up to 30 days ahead for GloFAS) and seasonal range (up to 12 weeks ahead) and detailed forecasts at stations where the national services are providing real-time data. They are served through intuitive and interactive web interfaces designed to provide user experience and tools necessary for decision making.

The role of the Graduate Hydrological Forecast Analyst is to support the team in the generation, analysis and evaluation of hydrological forecasts and related products, including handling observational data and running experiments to test new forecast developments.

The selected candidate will work closely with the other members of the Environmental Forecast team, the CDS team as well as ECMWF scientists and other staff, including in other CEMS-Floods centres and at the JRC.

The role will enable the Graduate Hydrological Forecast Analyst to get hands-on experience with hydro-climate data and forecast production, and to work with colleagues in a science driven, highly reputable international organisation.

4. Main duties and key responsibilities

  • Handling and quality checking observational hydrological data
  • Supporting the maintenance of the Geospatial Database and GIS datasets
  • Developing (or contributing to the development of) software for hydrological forecast verification
  • Running the hydrological forecast experiments
  • Supporting the production and analysis of hydrological forecasts
  • Providing general support to the Environmental Forecast Team
  • Contributing to CEMS-Flood shared operational duties
  • Other similar duties as assigned from time to time

5. Personal attributes

  • Very good problem-solving skills with a proactive approach, together with an interest in identifying, investigating and solving technical problems
  • Strong communication and interpersonal skills, with the ability to build strong working relationships, both within and outside the team
  • Excellent attention to detail
  • Ability to work to tight deadlines
  • Open-minded attitude
  • Ability to work with people from different backgrounds
  • Dedication and enthusiasm to work in a multi-national team
  • Eager to learn

6. Qualifications and experience required


  • A university Master degree in environmental/hydrological science, physics, applied mathematics, computational science, engineering or similar is required.


  • Recent Masters Graduate.
  • Experience in developing/ maintaining computer codes would be an advantage.

Knowledge and skills (including language)

  • Good knowledge of Python or similar language.
  • Good knowledge of UNIX and code versioning with git or similar software would be an advantage.
  • Knowledge of QGIS or other GIS package would be an advantage.
  • Candidates must be able to work effectively in English and interviews will be conducted in English.
  • A good knowledge of one of the Centre’s other working languages (French or German) would be an advantage.

7. Other information

The successful candidate will be recruited at the A1 grade, according to the scales of the Co-ordinated Organisations and the annual basic salary will be £46,353.96 net of tax. This position is assigned to the employment category STF-PS as defined in the Staff Regulations.

Full details of salary scales and allowances are available on the ECMWF website at, including the Centre’s Staff Regulations regarding the terms and conditions of employment.

Starting date: As soon as possible.

Length of contract: Until 31 August 2021, with the possibility of further contract subject to funding.

Location: The role will be based in the Reading area, in Berkshire, United Kingdom.

Interviews for this position will take place in Reading, Berkshire between 10-12 December 2019.

8. How to apply

Please apply by completing the online application form available at

To contact the ECMWF Recruitment Team, please email

At ECMWF, we consider an inclusive environment as key for our success. We are dedicated to ensuring a workplace that embraces diversity and provides equal opportunities for all, without distinction as to race, gender, age, marital status, social status, disability, sexual orientation, religion, personality, ethnicity and culture. We value the benefits derived from a diverse workforce and are committed to having staff that reflect the diversity of the countries that are part of our community, in an environment that nurtures equality and inclusion.

Staff are usually recruited from among nationals of the following Member States and Co-operating States:

Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, France, Hungary, Germany, Greece, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Montenegro, the Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, Romania, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey and the United Kingdom.

Staff from other countries may be considered in exceptional cases

published: 11 October 2019     Please mention EARTHWORKS when responding to this advertisement.